While NYU-AAUP is not a bargaining chapter, we routinely advocate for the collective bargaining rights of our fellow employees. Today, we stand in support of GSOC’s strike action, as we did fifteen years ago when our university administration’s ill-advised effort to stamp out the union left a bitter and divisive legacy that is still felt on this campus.
Over the years, NYU spent tens of millions of dollars on union-busting law firms in order to prevent the establishment of a graduate employee union. After the recognition of the union in 2013, we thought that these days of disrespect were over, and that bargaining in good faith would become customary. The testimony of students we teach with suggests that NYU’s old habits did not die. We are dismayed to note that GSOC is only the latest NYU employee union that has had to authorize a strike in order to secure a contract. No union wants to ask this of their members, and it is always a last resort. Why does the NYU administration push bargaining to the brink so often? Nothing could be more detrimental to the collegial ethos of respect for the labor of those who share our common workplace.
We are asking for our own members and for the faculty at large to support the strike by honoring, and joining, the picket line. We strongly advocate that faculty resist any call to substitute their own labor for that of their TAs in the matter of grading or teaching, and that they forgo any kind of reporting on students who may or may not be participating in any union action. We also urge the NYU administration to refrain from further berating the union in public statements and to resolve the outstanding contract differences as soon as possible so that disruptions to campus life are minimized.
Executive Officers, NYU-AAUP